PM on pa with the G-G
Did anyone else notice on the TV pictures of yesterday's Ratana celebrations the presence of the Governor-General? I'm sure I spotted her amongst the dignitaries.
The Ratana Church is more than just a religious sect it is - or should I say - was, a political movement of Maori who wanted the Treaty of Waitangi upheld and land taken wrongfully from them by the government to be returned. Since becoming allied to the Labour Party in the 1930s the political element seems to have died off. Like most Maori attempts at self-determination the Pakeha elements of government have been remarkably successful in buying them off.
It is strange however that a religious/quasi-political event such as their annual celebration (of their founder's birthday) should attract the presence of the Governor-General. Does she attend other religious functions? Does she attend other religious-political functions? Has the Governor-General ever attended Ratana Pa before?
I ask these questions because:
1. I am anti-religious and think it wise that the representative of our Head of State should not associate with overtly religious (ie. cult) events.
2. I do not think it wise that the representative of our Head of State should attend "political" functions either (although the nature of the event seems to be pan-political - so that criticism is somewhat blunted).
3. The current PM banned the last Governor-General from attending Waitangi (which I think ought to have caused a constitutional crisis given that Hardy-Boys wanted very much to attend and is the ex-officio Chairman of the Treaty grounds trust board) so may have instructed (ie. ordered) this Governor-General to be at Ratana (with her).
Did the PM order the G-G to be at Ratana as an extension of her mana?